Shoreline Community College rises in national ranking for international students

Tuesday, December 6, 2022

International Tea and Coffee Tasting event was a fun way to share different cultures
Photo courtesy Shoreline Community College

Shoreline Community College (Shoreline) ranked 13th among community colleges in the U.S. for international students hosted, according to the annual Open Doors report for 2021-22. Since 2005, Shoreline has been a leading institution for hosting international students among community colleges, ranking 16th overall in the report just last year.

Shoreline President Dr. Jack Kahn said he is incredibly pleased with this recognition of the college's international program.

“As a new leader here, I am continually impressed with the outreach efforts to recruit diverse international students and the genuine care that goes into supporting them throughout their academic journey,” said Kahn. 
“We have even more in store in forming stronger ties with our international population to ensure a broad local community of support and encouragement!”

Although Shoreline, like most other schools, experienced declines in actual numbers of international students during the pandemic, the higher ranking reflects how well the college and its International Education department performed during these turbulent times.

The U.S. welcomed almost a million international students to its universities and colleges in 2021/22, a 3.8% increase from 2020/21 and an 11.8% decrease from 2019/20 (pre-pandemic). These international students also contributed $33.8 billion to the U.S. economy during the year.

While international student enrollment is rebounding across the country, community colleges have seen the steepest decline and are experiencing the slowest recovery compared to other institutional types. 

Yet, Shoreline has demonstrated its ability to respond to shifting tides and worldwide competition. Associate Vice President of International Education and Global Engagement Samira Pardanani says she and her team are excited to engage with our overseas and local partners, parents, and prospective students and grow back enrollments after the impacts of the pandemic.

Of the approximately 1,500 community colleges in the country, only a small number boast significant international student enrollments. Community colleges that want to host students from around the world must be ready to create an infrastructure and offer specialized services that allow them to recruit and retain this unique population.

One of Shoreline’s biggest draws for international students is its academic and university transfer advising. Most of the college’s international students complete their associate degree at Shoreline and transfer to competitive universities across the U.S. While most resident students prefer to transfer to in-state universities, international students transfer to almost 200 universities around the country.

Shoreline academic advisors serving international students are experts at preparing students to transfer to out-of-state universities such as the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), the University of California, Berkeley (UC Berkeley), and the University of Michigan, as well as the University of Washington. Additionally, Shoreline academic advisors know the myriad immigration regulations that international students must follow to maintain their U.S. status.

The college’s international alumni often speak fondly about their time there and their deep connections with faculty, staff and fellow students. 

Having students from 64 countries on campus presents many opportunities for local students to engage with different cultures, learn about issues impacting other regions of the globe and make new friends. 

This was on full display at a recent International Tea and Coffee Tasting event, where resident and international students, along with faculty, staff and community members, stopped by to sample different beverages and learn about the history and culture of the region. The event launched the college’s celebration of International Education Week.

To learn more about international student enrollment at Shoreline, visit


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